COVID-19 INFORMATION What you need to know about the coronavirus if you are living in Japan or planning a visit.
world

'South Park' producers say network cut fear speech

52 Comments

The requested article has expired, and is no longer available. Any related articles, and user comments are shown below.

© Copyright 2010 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.

52 Comments
Login to comment

South Park was great when it first started, but beyond that, with exception to a few episodes, it's been crap. Stirring the pot can be a lot of fun, but when that's all you create a new show for it can get a little out of hand. I'm not saying that this particular episode is especially controversial -- haven't seen it -- but my guess is it's much like many others.

The original Jesus vs. Santa clip is still the best.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The original Jesus vs. Santa clip is still the best.

No christians warned them they would die if they showed that episode.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Maybe free speech really is dead.

Theo Van Gogh's message was a great deal more controversial because it was done to send a clear message that was ultimately anti-Islam (he still didn't deserve to be murdered for it). I don't understand how that compares to a silly South Park episode at all, and the fact that this group feels the need to compare it shows how twisted these people really are. There is no check on the violence, it's just pure anger over something that it is not unique to them or their religion (South Park exists to take cheap shots at EVERYBODY), and they just seem to think they have some extra authority to kill people over it. It makes me sick.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I can't believe they backed down due to a stupid threat.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

South Park was great when it first started, but beyond that, with exception to a few episodes, it's been crap. Stirring the pot can be a lot of fun, but when that's all you create a new show for it can get a little out of hand. I'm not saying that this particular episode is especially controversial -- haven't seen it -- but my guess is it's much like many others. The original Jesus vs. Santa clip is still the best.

Oh please there have been plenty of good episodes for the past 13 years, where have you been for the last 5 years? "Pee", "Whale whores", "The Ring", "Butters Bottom Bword","China problem", "Breast cancer show ever", "Major Boobage", "Over logging", "Dances with smurfs", "The snuke", "The List", "Tsst" and a heck of a lot more are all excellent episodes of the past 4 seasons!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

When was the last time you watched a south park episode smithinjapan?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

ha! see american media lecturing another country for free speech / humanright.

now they got their own test and Comedy Central seem to fall!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

South Park was great when it first started, but beyond that, with exception to a few episodes, it's been crap.

It's been crap, but you must have watched all the episodes to make a statement like that. Why do you watch something that you think is crap??

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Oh man. "ha! see american media lecturing another country for free speech / humanright."

When was the media in America ever telling other countries not to back down from the almost weekly threats that militant Muslims now make against newspapers, universities, writers, TV stations, radio stations etc.? The mainstream media in America coddles these fanatics. They go out of their way to to display how 'tolerant,' i.e. cowardly, they have become.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

When was the media in America ever telling other countries not to back down from the almost...

hello, speech / humanright doesn't limited only with the muslim threats.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

When was the last time you watched a south park episode smithinjapan?

Totally agree. The show is awesome getting better every year. Also I think Muhammad looked great in that bear suit.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

No christians warned them they would die if they showed that episode.

No, they're too busy praying for President Obama's death and creating plots to kill police officers.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I don't watch South Park as I don't find it funny. Maybe I'm just one of those uptight people who have a complex sense of humor, but as I said in my comment in the previous article it's all about responsibility. Say something and it is bound to be disagreeable with someone. If you'll be afraid of anything that results with what you say, don't say it. Bleeping is a bit inelegant though.

I wonder if the Muslim population get offended with parodies of Jesus... As far as I know Jesus is a figure in Islam as well.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Just like the military cancelling "The Cove". We Americans are becoming whimps.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

neverknow2: "No christians warned them they would die if they showed that episode."

Interesting that you're trying to turn this into a debate on 'which religion is better (or the lesser of two evils)' when I was simply saying the show is not that great anymore. I do remember a lot of outrage over the original sketch from which the show was born, though you're probably right on the death threat thing. So what?

Mr. Dog: "It's been crap, but you must have watched all the episodes to make a statement like that. Why do you watch something that you think is crap??"

Admittedly I have not seen ALL, but I have watched most (solely because I couldn't find the ones I haven't seen). Why do I watch something I think is crap? In part for the same reason I watched Heroes past season 1... I was hoping it might get better.

Noliving: "Oh please there have been plenty of good episodes for the past 13 years, where have you been for the last 5 years?"

In Japan. Do you know which station airs the show? :) But seriously, you act as though I'm not entitled to my opinion when you list six or so 'great' episodes out of the shows 13 year history! True, there have been SOME good episodes, as I originally stated, but on the whole I find the show in poor taste and over the top. I enjoy a good dig at politics, nationality, religion, or what have you, but simply stirring the pot for the sake of getting some sensationality is not necessarily 'funny'. And while the crappy animation may be what charmed some in the beginning, I don't think it flies in quite the same way.

Noliving: "When was the last time you watched a south park episode smithinjapan?"

Last week... season 12.. maybe episode 3? The one where Cartman keeps berating Kyle's girlfriend about women's rights. Can't remember the name.

I feel much the same about the Family Guy, if that helps. The Simpsons is by far and away the best cartoon.

Anyway, it's a shame Comedy Central backed down, but they did the same thing when Tom Cruise demanded the episode mocking Scientology be cut.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"Censorship" simply makes [ ], which the jihadists want forbidden on infidel TV, one of a class of words which are considered bad / dirty/ offensive etc. and makes it, if South Park creators choose to do so, interchangeable with certain bodily functions and products, or sex acts, or criminals and undesirable personality traits.

"Oh [ infidel profanity ] [ Offensive to Jihadists ], they killed Kenny!"

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Their prophet (whose name isn't even mentioned in the article HAR!) wasn't even in the bear suit. It was Santa...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Noliving: "Oh please there have been plenty of good episodes for the past 13 years, where have you been for the last 5 years?" In Japan. Do you know which station airs the show? :)

smithinjapan: you can watch them online, free or charge on their website.

I'm not a big SP fan, but it has got a lot better since it first started. Sometimes there are some good points raised too.

I don't see much of a problem with them complaining that the station bleeped-out what was said. If some Islamic terrorist blew up the building etc, they (the station) would be just as much to blame as the creators.

Maybe they should just stop the broadcasting from now on and go completely online? Avoid problems with the station? They probably have a contract though so maybe difficult I guess.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Intimidation works. Western concepts about free speech are taking place to islamic shariah demands.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Mr.Dog: It was meant as a joke. I know full well you can get things online.

Oh, and I before said 'Kyle's' girlfriend, but I meant Stan's, I think. Name's Wendy?

And just in case anyone entertained any doubts, I never said nor do I think that the reaction by some Islamic radicals here is not extreme. It is, and WAY out of bounds. I simply stated that I don't think the show is all it's cracked up to be. I could very easily make a show with episodes that offend people under the guise of social commentary, and could do it using this board alone. Heck, you could have a show with four young American kids who set a trip wire along the street in Okinawa and knock over a female from her scooter because they are upset at the whole Futenma thing... have Hatoyama with a thicket of short, curly hair and 'loopy' eyes saying, "My ears didn't hear that!" and winking, "Trust me! Trust me!" and the boys pointing out how foolish it is for the Japanese to demand the US leave and you could be the ultra-Right in Japan would threaten the screening of it. It wouldn't mean the show is any better for it, or any good to begin with.

I have thoroughly enjoyed some episodes of South Park, but on the whole I think (that means it's my opinion) the show is garbage. I do respect the creators and like their standpoint on a number of things, but still.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

smithinjapan:

" never said nor do I think that the reaction by some Islamic radicals here is not extreme. It is, and WAY out of bounds. "

It is "way out of bounds", but it works. Western media have now de facto accepted that Western notions of free speech are superceded by muslim demands. And that is quite in line with the islamic concept of society, where non-muslims are only accepted as second-class dhimmis.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Islam works? Huh? You mean each Muslim is connected internally to Allah, and smiles beatifically with the profound knowledge of the Divine? Attracted to this, new converts are made daily?

Er, I think not. Most of them have forgotten the inner path and gotten caught on externals.

Maybe OK when Islam was confined to the Middle East, but when the Sunni/Shia infighting spills out into the rest of the world people are not too happy. And when the 'real' enemy is said to be The Unbelievers, or the USA or Israel, or The West or some such crude nonsense, in order to distract attention away from bitter intraIslamic factional fighting, then we all get dragged in, like it or not.

This is called 'working' ???

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Jeez, all this about Muhammed. Yet no one had a problem with Buddha snorting cocaine? Hehe.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

smithinjapan: In Japan. Do you know which station airs the show? :)

You can actually go to SouthParkStudios.com and watch all the shows. It's run by Comedy Central and they allow viewing from overseas.

I'd forgotten about the show until someone mentioned it last month. I didn't even know they were still making it. I started to watch from the most recent season and it's pretty good stuff. I watched the episode in question and it's worth watching.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

But seriously, you act as though I'm not entitled to my opinion when you list six or so 'great' episodes out of the shows 13 year history!

I'm not saying your not entitled to your opinion, I'm saying your opinion is wrong! You forget the "and a heck of a lot more" part, all those episodes I listed were my personal favorites of the past 4 seasons, I even said the past 4 seasons, so no I wasn't listing those episodes as the only good episodes in the shows 14 seasons its been on the air, plus it was 12 episodes not six.

same thing when Tom Cruise demanded the episode mocking Scientology be cut.

Are you referring to the season 9 episode Trapped in the closet which is an epic mocking of Scientology? I don't recall that episode ever being cut!

feel much the same about the Family Guy

So does southpark, they ripped it in the episodes cartoon wars part 1 and 2 of season 10.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Smithinjapan you need to watch season 13 episode whale whores.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

SuperLib: "You can actually go to SouthParkStudios.com and watch all the shows. It's run by Comedy Central and they allow viewing from overseas."

Thanks! I think someone else mentioned that on here as well. I'll check it out for sure, if not for South Park, then for something else at least. I wonder if they have archives of Mystery Science Theatre 3000. Now THAT was funny!

Noliving: "I'm not saying your not entitled to your opinion, I'm saying your opinion is wrong!"

Well, I'll take that as the emphatic opinion of a fan rather than the judgement it appears to be. Opinion, by definition, cannot really be wrong. The facts that back it up can be, of course.

"Are you referring to the season 9 episode Trapped in the closet which is an epic mocking of Scientology? I don't recall that episode ever being cut!"

I am indeed. I don't think it ever aired, if I remember the controversy correctly, but I know there was a big lawsuit threat by Cruise and I think Comedy Central yanked it. Easy way to find out... go to the Comedy Central site (not a Torrent!) and see if the episode is there for viewing. Let me know.

"So does southpark, they ripped it in the episodes cartoon wars part 1 and 2 of season 10."

If I had to choose, I would easily choose South Park over Family Guy, which was seemed to me when it premiered an obvious attempt to ride The Simpsons coat tails and perhaps even the sitcom Married with Children. The latter show I abhor, whereas as I have said there are SOME South Park episodes I do enjoy.

"Smithinjapan you need to watch season 13 episode whale whores."

Well, on your recommendation I shall.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Noliving: "The latter show I abhor"

By that I meant the Family Guy, not Married with Children. For some bizarre reason I liked that show.

Okay, off to the Southparkstudios site.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It came during about 35 seconds of dialogue between the cartoon characters of Kyle, Jesus Christ and Santa Claus that was bleeped out.

Huh, I thought that was part of the show.

don't watch South Park as I don't find it funny. Maybe I'm just one of those uptight people who have a complex sense of humor

Complex sense of humor? A psychopath has a complex sense of humor. Just kidding, some of the stuff is pretty base but I enjoy it.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

WilliB: " Western media have now de facto accepted that Western notions of free speech are superceded by muslim demands."

Why, because Comedy Central yanked the episode? How about the very Western newspaper the printed the cartoon of the prophet Mohammed that led to the death threat, and even the assassination attempt, of the Dutch cartoonist? It was never pulled, nor was any apology written, and yet you claim the standard response to, ahem... 'Muslim (not even radical Islamist, but the 1.4 billion people of the earth whose lifestyle you refuse to even try to understand) demands', is to do whatever they say based on this one example.

Sorry, mi amigo... forgive me if I don't buy into the one-sided and somewhat ignorant view your comment represents.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I actually saw the Scientology/Tom Cruise "come out of the closet" episode from my Slingbox in USA last night, so it wasnt yanked for sure.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Opinion, by definition, cannot really be wrong. The facts that back it up can be, of course.

Opinions by definition can be wrong, for example my opinion of the world is that the world if flat, can't be wrong because it is an opinion right? My opinion of women is that all of them around the world, every single one of them is secretly a prostitute. That opinion can't be wrong can it?

I am indeed. I don't think it ever aired, if I remember the controversy correctly, but I know there was a big lawsuit threat by Cruise and I think Comedy Central yanked it. Easy way to find out... go to the Comedy Central site (not a Torrent!) and see if the episode is there for viewing. Let me know.

Oh there was a controversy because it caused one of the main voice actor, Isaac Hayes, to leave thus killing chef. The episode was never yanked, it aired on November 16th, 2005. You can go to comedy central, click on southpark which will take you to southparkstudios and you can watch the episode.

By that I meant the Family Guy, not Married with Children. For some bizarre reason I liked that show.

Its good thing you cleared that up because I was about to rip into you for saying such blasphemy!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Correction: world is flat

We really need an edit button.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It came during about 35 seconds of dialogue between the cartoon characters of Kyle, Jesus Christ and Santa Claus that was bleeped out.

Huh, I thought that was part of the show.

I am pretty sure it was part of the show. The first couple of bleeps when they were probably mentioning Mohamed may have been done by CC but when they got to the final dialogue, it was pretty obvious it was part of the show and they were making a meta joke out of it.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

it was pretty obvious it was part of the show and they were making a meta joke out of it.

To quote the producers “It wasn’t some meta-joke on our part," so I'm going to go out on a limb and say that is probably wasn't a joke on their part.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

They chickened out!! Aaaawwww!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Isn't South Park all about blasphemy and irreverence? I think these poor Muslims would be better to just avoid watching it. By the way still funny as hell after 200 episodes.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Radical Islam.

Pretty much sucks in my opinion....No offense to those of adhere to the faith.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

This threatening to kill people because it's religously offensive crap needs to stop. Like yesterday.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

South Park rips on pretty much everybody in pop culture. But there is only one group that comedy central will cave in to. The message is that threats of violence work. The guys who run that islamic web site ought to be arrested for death threats. But they will go free and comedy central will kiss their butts rather than stand up for free speech. Pathetic.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

How about the very Western newspaper the printed the cartoon of the prophet Mohammed that led to the death threat, and even the assassination attempt, of the Dutch cartoonist?

So the only example you can cite resulted in death threats and assassination attempts... ho hum.

but the 1.4 billion people of the earth whose lifestyle you refuse to even try to understand

Your arrogance is astounding. People who don't agree with your head-in-the-sand fluffy thinking are usually those who have read the koran and DO understand what makes Islam tick, and quite rightly come to the conclusion that Islam, in its current 7thC belligerent form, should have no place in the 21stC. Of course, you also seem to think that people who dislike Islam also dislike all Muslims, but that's your own problem.

based on this one example

Are you myopic? You've not seen the attempt by Islamic countries at the UN to make criticism/parody of religion illegal? (Of course, the text of the proposal only mentions Islam...) We're heading back to the days of heresy and blasphemy trials. Of course, they already exist all over the Islamic world, but I'm sure you're fine with that coming to the rest of world too.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Muslim Revolution? I hope the FBI, the CIA etc..are tracking their every move, every email, phone call etc..that would be nice to put on a South Park episode, huh? Some American born Talibanis, having a great time in Guantanamo, Cuba controlled by the USA. Gosh! I should write and send off some funny ideas to the writers of South Park! Mix in Homer Simpson and Bart too! Viva la free speech! Down with these idiots from Muslim Revolution! May the rot in the lovely prisons of Camp X Ray!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Actually, the Scientology episode did spark some controversy and Comedy Central did refuse to rebroadcast it after it aired. But some other stuff happened and it came back into the rerun rotation.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trapped_in_theCloset%28South_Park%29#Controversy

And in that case, no one's life was even threatened.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

NoLiving: "Opinions by definition can be wrong, for example my opinion of the world is that the world if flat, can't be wrong because it is an opinion right?"

I think you're confusing 'opinion' with 'statement of fact' or 'judgement'. Saying, 'every women is a prostitute' is not an opinion, it is a misguided judgement. Saying, "I like women... they have nice hair" or something like that cannot be called correct or incorrect because it is a personal opinion. "THAT ONE has bad hair!" on the other hand, much like saying the world is flat, is not an opinion but a person stating what they believe is fact.

"My opinion of women is that all of them around the world, every single one of them is secretly a prostitute. That opinion can't be wrong can it?"

You could argue all you want that YOU THINK all women are secretly prostitutes, and I that I think you are wrong, but it still comes down to opinion, and neither of us would be incorrect unless we were saying it as though it were fact (not opinion).

Opinion: I like cake -- it's sweet. Fact: Cake is full of sugar.

The former you cannot say is right or wrong, the latter, depending on what was used to make the cake, you can. So one more time, saying, "the world is flat" is not an opinion.

Regardless, I went to the Comedy Central and watched Whale Whores... it was better than average, and particularly poignant given where most posters on here live and work. It was also a bit cleverer than usual with the ending and what not, though they should have made Hatoyama out to look more like the loopy figure-head he is instead of pretending to be strong. I remember when I stopped watching South Park, aside from the episode I watched last week... It was the "Brittney's New Look" episode. Absolute garbage.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Oh for the love of god it is Noliving not NoLiving!

I think you're confusing 'opinion' with 'statement of fact' or 'judgement'. Saying, 'every women is a prostitute' is not an opinion, it is a misguided judgement.

Opinions are judgements dude, here is one definition for ya dude:

"a judgment or estimate of a person or thing with respect to character, merit, etc."

Saying, "I like women... they have nice hair" or something like that cannot be called correct or incorrect because it is a personal opinion.

But I can because not all women have hair, some are bald!

"THAT ONE has bad hair!" on the other hand, much like saying the world is flat, is not an opinion but a person stating what they believe is fact.

Yes it is! Here is another definition: A belief or conclusion held with confidence but not substantiated by positive knowledge or proof

I believe the earth is flat with absolute confidence but with no evidence, I don't have evidence that the earth is flat but I believe it, see by the definition above it is an opinion that is also wrong!

You could argue all you want that YOU THINK all women are secretly prostitutes, and I that I think you are wrong, but it still comes down to opinion, and neither of us would be incorrect unless we were saying it as though it were fact (not opinion).

and you would be correct and I would be wrong dude, opinions like the belief the world is flat can be proven wrong!

Here is something to consider, A judgment based on special knowledge and given by an expert: a medical opinion. Can a medical opinion be wrong? The answer is yes! Guess how they can be wrong!

"the world is flat" is not an opinion.

Yes it can be and is!

The fact of the matter is that opinions can be right or wrong! All an opinion is is just a belief or judgement that a person believes is true, guess what it can be wrong. For example I could be of the opinion that my sister is cheating on her boyfriend, could I be wrong in that opinion? Yes!

"Brittney's New Look" episode. Absolute garbage.

Everyone agrees with you on that one! Whale whores is good though! Medical marijuana episode is also good. Dances with smurfs also from season 13 is also another episode you should watch! You should watch the snuke episode from season 11.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I saw the show last night, and I honestly thought the censored speech was part of the joke. You have long beeps covering the entire speech, then a quick cut to a character expressing agreement, then another beeped speech, then more agreement, then the show ends. I thought the message was that we really didn't learn anything...heh.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Not a fan of SP ("The Simpsons" is better written), but this is funny:

http://media.townhall.com/Townhall/Car/b/cb0424j20100424041528.jpg

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The kook who issued the death threats is an American convert to Mohammedism who lives with mommy. Google the name Zachary Adam Chesser.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@sailwind Don't feel the need to apologise to people of "faith". They should be fully responsible for the cult they are associated with.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Let's not bow to intimidation people!! Stand together.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I watched all of both season 12 and 13 (aside from what I've already seen and those that have not been posted yet for contract reasons), and I've become somewhat of a fan again, in part thanks to you. It seems that most of the episodes I watched just happened to be particularly bad ones (in my opinion). I still think (that's opinion) that in many cases the social commentary that Parker and Stone are making is over the top, and they are hitting the audience over the head with hammers (ex. 'They RAPED Indiana Jones'), but on the whole I thought the episodes were very clever, and at times quite funny.

Whale Whores was okay, but not my favourite (again, it's fitting given where we live.... assuming you live in Japan). I watched too many too fast to say which one is my favourite, but I'll revisit and get back to you on that. Another one I hated was the 'queef' one (and yes, I'm aware that they were pointing out double standards, and I also dislike the Terence and Phillip part of the show), although I LOVED the part with the Road Warrior sound bite... genius.

Anyway, thanks again to those who gave me the URL, and I think it's great of them to have a site where you can view all the episodes for free.

As for the network cutting the broadcast because of fear, I think it's a shame. I can understand their concern, but it's sad they have to give in to the fear.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

mmatheist: "@sailwind Don't feel the need to apologise to people of "faith". They should be fully responsible for the cult they are associated with."

Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, etc. are not 'cults', I hate to inform you. I agree sailwind doesn't need to apologize to anyone, but that he does just shows that at times he can be above those who are targeted in this article (ie. the people making the threats) and can be very civil despite his personal opinion.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites